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Focus on Personal and Professional Development, with Scott Ingram [Episode 703]

Scott Ingram, Account Director at Relationship One and the host of Sales Success StoriesInspired Marketing, and Daily Sales Tips Podcasts, joins me again on this episode.


  • New sales professionals expect that companies will invest in their development. Andy and Scott enjoyed extended onboarding when starting in sales, years ago. Scott encourages sales reps to own their development.
  • It is reasonable to expect your company to invest in your development but the fact is, it’s not going to happen except at major companies. Arrange for your own learning. Sales managers may work with you on cost.
  • Scott has interviewed 60 sales leaders on Sales Success Stories. The best of the best use a variety of methods with one common thread: being a student of sales and treating it as a craft that requires time and investment.
  • You have to read, listen, go to conferences, and find mentors, coaches, and peers that will help lift you up. It comes back to you. You have to be the one to assemble all that knowledge and fit it into your style and strengths.
  • One of the things the top 1% of sellers have in common is they are a little bit “rebel” and rule-breakers. They don’t follow the methodology or the prescribed process to a “T.” They’ve earned the right to some freedom.
  • You have to deliver the performance your leadership expects of you. Then layer on, in A/B style, doing your own thing, and measuring the results of both ways. It’s more work for a while. Present the results to your boss.
  • Scott has never seen a #1 sales rep who is there despite their boss. How do you have the conversation about doing it your way? Scott suggests asking reps who have worked for that leader how they worked together.
  • Mike Dudgeon of LinkedIn asked his team to treat their sales territory as a franchise. It’s all about revenue growth and sharpening the ax. We all need to continue to grow and improve in our careers, or we will be left behind.
  • Selling gets more fun when you treat it as a craft and hone your skill. Invest 5% or more of your annual income and time into learning. What you focus on must be something you know you can do and maintain every day.
  • Scott notes books he is reading now. He is working on the elimination of distractions, especially notifications and browser tabs and is rethinking the way he deals with LinkedIn — by checking it in the afternoon for 20 minutes.
  • Andy and Scott discuss Cal Newport’s books on cutting digital distractions. There are many needs for deep work in sales. Carve out response blocks on your calendar around your deep work. Get a virtual assistant.
  • Andy comments on responsiveness. Do the best you can, while respecting the person you are with. Andy offers, “Sorry I took so long to get back to you.” Figure out for yourself what works for you and your prospects.